This is my 900th post since I first began my blog. The first two years I spent getting my recipes online from another file that did not include pictures. I am slowly remaking every recipe and adding this much needed media. Pictures really make a blog what it is.
This changed in the last two years – I bought a new camera, joined a blog party fiesta friday which resulted in a social aspect to blogging. So, for this special post I decided to publish a post on gardening. This is my second love outside of cooking and the two really go hand in hand.
Occasionally, I comment that I need a break so if I should disappear it will not be for very long. It is Spring you know and that means working in the garden, volunteering and enjoying the upcoming months in Michigan. Even though I have a lot of energy blogging is demanding. I will always be cooking and hopefully coming up with new ideas to share. I mean 900 posts – whew!!!
Who’s a “Smart Gardener”? Me, that’s who. Recently I completed the Michigan State University (MSU) Extension Introduction to Smart Gardening Webinar Series and I am now a Master Gardener Smart Gardening Volunteer. I am actually an Advanced Organic Master Gardener too! Let’s put that all together Advanced Organic Master Gardener Smart Gardening Volunteer. That’s a mouthful isn’t it?
Besides the title of Smart Gardener I received a pin and certificate verifying that I had passed the initial requirements.
What is Smart Gardening? According to Michigan State University (MSU) “Science-based gardening, environmental awareness and sustainability have long been a hallmark of MSUE consumer horticulture programs. In 2013 the MSU Extension Consumer Horticulture team developed a method to distribute “smart” ideas to home gardeners that capitalize on the use of a “tiered” delivery system. The “Smart Gardening” initiative features simple, research-based messages adapted for home gardeners that are centered on environmental stewardship.”
To share these messages with a wide audience, every form of communication such as web, on-line, print and so on is employed. I will be communicating directly with people at gatherings such as our local farmer’s market, home and garden show or a fair. This will be one-on-one about how to be “smart” in gardening endeavors and providing printed materials on the Gardening in Michigan website.
So, how do you become a Smart Gardening Volunteer? First you need to be an active re-certified Master Gardener. The training includes review of all Smart Gardening consumer materials, videos and webinars. Oh yes, there are quizzes you have to turn in – they want to make sure you learned something.
How easy to learn at my own pace within a certain time limit, on my own computer while I have my coffee in the morning or just relaxing in the afternoon. I have had so much education in my life from a Bachelor’s Degree in Education, Masters in Library Science to many gardening and cooking classes and/or conferences. Education in any form continues to be a valuable part of my life and I hope it is with you too 🙂
This was so much fun and so educational – I really enjoyed the webinars on bees as I learned something new. Did you know there are almost 450 varieties of bees in Michigan?
I am so proud of the pictures below showing bees with their orange pollen sacs – beautiful aren’t they? Two of my best pictures ever… even Patty Nguyen gave the thumbs up. From Patty “bees are hard to shoot and you did a fantastic job”. Many of us know about Patty’s beautiful photos she takes of nature, young ones, special moments and the list goes on. Please check out Patty’s site https://pattynguyen.wordpress.com/2016/04/27/2016-monthly-photo-project-april/ for some really professional pictures. Besides she also likes to cook and is a teacher! Oh, I almost forgot Bailey – Patty has the cutest dog ever!